I’m very excited to see a show like The 100 on the CW. Two episodes into the season and they once again proved there is not a show on that network, even with its low budget standards, better at storytelling. They remember the basics to keeping a viewer engaged through every minute of the program by making all the stories matter. More people should be watching this show. Given it’s very heavy serialized element though, I get why it can be difficult to watch. You can’t casually watch The 100 while doing your laundry and updating your Facebook status. You have to pay attention.
I loved “Inclement Weather.” It was even better than the awesome premiere, and is not hesitating to kick things up to 11 even though this is just episode two. With four stories going at once, it’s very challenging to bring them all together into a seamless hour, yet writer Michael Angeli pulled it off magnificently. There wasn’t one part that I didn’t have interest in and I was able to jump easily from one unfolding plot to the next without getting lost.
First, before I go into the review, I wanted to give MASSIVE kudos to the new opening. Opening title sequences like this became a lost art in television a while ago when networks decided to shorten episode times by adding more commercials. So the opener was often sacrificed for time. But shows like Game of Thrones (obviously not limited because they don’t run commercials) reminded us what happens when you run a thrilling, very exciting opening sequence. It turns watching the episode into an event!
The new 100 opener one is clearly a Game of Thrones inspired montage, flying through the ruins of the tattered earth while listing all the cast members in bold fashion. So few CW shows have a real opening (come to think of it, this might be the only one). They usually flash the series logo and then list the credits while the episode starts. It makes you realize what a good opening does in getting you excited to watch an episode. Sure, it takes a minute from the actual episode, but when you get to see something that awesome each week, do you mind? It’s visually engaging and sets this show apart from the rest. This show should be set apart, because it’s taking chances never seen before on this network.
If I have to pick a favorite story of the four fronts, it was definitely Jaha. I wondered how in the world they could have gotten him off that station. The way it happened was believable and very engrossing. I was surprised to find Jaha actually found a baby. With the young child in his arms, he realized that his plan of dying on that station was no longer an option. He had to find to a way to get them both out. Given all the hardware left on that station, something could be done. What do you know, something could. A missile. The problem was, it was on the other side of the compound and could only be reached by going through space. I loved Jaha’s calm demeanor while researching options, gently assuring the child that they would get out of there, even though it was very risky and had a high failure rate. He was nervous for sure, and doubtful, but his resolve was strong and he never panicked. Isaiah Washington FTW.
On the ground, there was definite tension at the new camp. Kane was trying his best to maintain order, but there were some hiccups. People were a little nervous about what was out there and they hadn’t secured the barrier around the camp yet. When a gun was handed out to a trigger happy civilian, there was no way Kane was taking any of that. Only soldiers were going out there are searching the perimeter. All else must stay behind for their protection, no exceptions. This didn’t sit well with Abby, who was desperate to go out there and find Clarke and the others. Kane refused to let that happen though, and some strung up humans that they found butchered in the woods was good enough reasoning. Kane was a lot better this week because his actions seemed fair and with purpose. I love seeing this side of Kane, sympathetic but willing to make the tough decisions. He detained Murphy with Bellamy, so he did take into account that Murphy was a murderer (and shot poor Raven).
Raven needed to have surgery, but there was no anesthesia. She didn’t care, it was either that or be paralyzed. Abby operated, Raven screamed, Finn was there dutifully by her side to give support, and all the camp members somberly understood the pain she was going though as they heard her cries. Those reactions prove that this is a family, despite all their conflicts and misgivings. They care deeply for one another. Its touches like this that make an episode so engaging. They never forget there must be emotional moments to a fast paced story or something is lost. When it was all over, Raven gave a directive to Finn. She was going to rest and when she woke up, she didn’t want to see him there. She wanted him to go out there and find the others. He was one of the few that knew how and that served a better purpose.
Octavia got a chance to show her moxie too, and it’s wonderful to see her like this and not the helpless victim we get so many times. She was healed by The Grounders healer, played by Ty Olsson. (Good to see you on another show buddy! I got to interview him once for Supernatural and he is a wonderful down to earth person). The Grounders have Lincoln though and want him to pay for his crimes. So Octavia knocks out the healer, puts a knife to his throat and goes to the camp, demanding Lincoln in a trade. Luckily, she speaks some Grounder and was able to make her demands in their language. She was really badass doing it too, showing how ruthless she can be when pushed. It eventually worked, except during the exchange those pesky reapers showed up. Octavia and the Grounders leader were left behind. Do the Reapers not take females? Anyway, those two will obviously have to work together to get the healer and Lincoln back.
That leaves us at Mount Weather, where Clarke is still making demands. A party comes in wounded, and she is convinced they had engaged with the Ark people because one of them was shot. President Dante though proved to her it was an arrow wound. She spouted all sorts of conspiracy theories to Jasper who got rather fed up with her talk. He got blunt with her (way to go Jasper!), she’s the only one screwing things up for them. He wants to remain at Mount Weather because he loves the safety and comfort, and he’s afraid all her actions will force the Mountain Men to make them leave. Clarke…doesn’t listen, instead getting herself in the infirmary by cutting open her already wounded arm (yuck!). It’s there she can finally discover the truth.
I loved how everything played out to conclusion in a stunning back and forth at the end. Jaha’s story was the most tear jerking. He did his daring space walk to the other side and got in just as his helmet cracked open. He went to get the baby strapped to his chest only to find they were old blankets. He imagined the child. Except now the child was standing in front of him all grown up. Yep, it was Wells. He stressed to his Dad how his people needed him and he was not giving up. He was going to get on that rocket missile and give himself that chance to live. Jaha tearfully agreed and as his son disappeared he got on the rocket just in time, ready to fight for life. Beautiful exchange between those two and I hope that ghost Wells makes more appearances. These two are amazing together.
Jaha goes through one very bumpy ride then when it’s all over he opens the capsule. He sees the sunlight, then touches the sandy ground with wonder as he gets out. Welcome to Earth Chancellor. No one has deserved this day more than you. “May we meet again,” he marvels. Yep, that got me! BTW, it looks like he’s in the ruins of old New York City. Considering the others are near Washington, he has a journey!
Finn then kicked his plan into motion, springing Bellamy out of lockup, except Bellamy decided to take Murphy too. Traitor or not, he knows where the Grounders camp is, and that’s where they’re looking. The two red shirts from last week join along too, and once they get out of the camp they’re greeted by a security officer. He…hands them a gun! Then Abby appears, providing another gun and gives them all a supportive send off. Judging by the previews next week, Kane isn’t going to take this very well.
But it’s not over yet! Yes, the stunning narrative that keeps on going. Clarke pretends to be asleep until the nurses go away and notices the soldiers are being healed by a transfusion, including the one that was badly burned in the beginning of the episode but is now almost okay. It looks like the same transfusion that Maya got the week before. Clarke finds a vent and climbs through it, checking to see where the blood is coming from. That’s when we get the stunning reveal, she finds two Grounders suspended upside down with the blood being drained from them. She also finds plenty of other Grounders in cages, including Anya! It’s time for a jail break.
Wow, so The Grounders have some sort of healing properties in their blood? By living on the earth all these years they developed superior immune systems? That makes sense. Is it possible that if they run out of Grounders supply the 48 will suffice? It’s kind of freaky if you think about it. You think that food supply might also consist of Grounder? I really don’t want to think about that yet.
So yes, so much action, four very interesting stories, and it all leaves me thrilled at the end. Out of the numerous TV shows I saw this week, this was by far the best episode of them all. It wins my five stars for the week. Major congratulations to the writers for showing how to pull off four stories at once and make it all good. Other shows on The CW really need to pay attention. Someone has upped their game.